Monday, 5 September 2011

If I know Mary as well as I think I do, she'll invite us right in for tea and strumpets.

No 445 - Dumb and Dumber
Director - Peter Farrelly

So. I planned to sit down and watch Lawrence of Arabia. But no one had warned me it was a billion hours long. So I sat down to watch that other classic of cinema:


I think I had watched it once before, many a year ago - but didn't really have much knowledge of it. I'm not a massive fan of Jim Carrey's early gurning phase (with the exception of the Mask, which is absolute genius) so had always just seen this as a film which was ok, but nothing special.

On rewatching, I was surprised by the depth. Particularly the depth of Lloyd's character. Harry seemed too whacked out to be really paying attention to the world. But Lloyd is just desperate for affection. The entire film is based around the ridiculous lengths one man is willing to go in order to try and impress a woman.

The thing is (and I've always felt this) - The Farrelly brothers try too hard. They ruin the film with their insistence on toilet humour (which is by far the weaker jokes), and when they do dare to do a subtler joke it is usually much ore triumphant than their more obvious jokes.
For example I found the line "I fell off the jetway again" much funnier than the entire sequence of events which happened before, leading to Lloyd falling.
I suppose asking for intelligent humour in a film like Dumb and Dumber is a bit redundant. But it is these small moments which show me what could have been.

There were some pleasent surprises in the film - there are some great cuts, most famously that great boobs/headlight cut - that, as well as the dog-car, are moments of the brilliant visual humour which are interspersed throughout the film.

I think, really this is a film of brilliantly funny moments and great concepts. But in trying to make a film, it resorts too often to cheap humour which stops it from being truly remarkable.

But at times it is truly painfully funny!

PS - I just found out from IMDB that Nic Cage and Gary Oldman were the first choices to play Harry and Lloyd. That would have essentially made this the most unhinged film of geniusness ever.
Such a shame.... don't get me wrong, Daniels and Carrey are good. But.... NIC CAGE AND GARY OLDMAN?!

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